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Exxon, Carbide venture spells Univation

NEW YORK — Exxon Chemical Co. and Union Carbide Corp. named their polyethylene technology joint venture Univation Technologies.

Gregory McPike, Univation president and chief executive officer, said the venture will license Unipol PE process technology, Exxpol metallocene catalyst technology and Super Condensed Mode Technology for Unipol capacity increases.

Univation's Mont Belvieu, Texas, metallocene facility already is open with enough catalyst capacity to support 3 billion pounds of PE production annually. The Houston-based venture has technical centers in Bound Brook, N.J.; Baytown, Texas; and South Charleston, W.Va. Its main licensing offices are in Danbury, Conn.; Houston; Tokyo; Geneva; Vienna, Austria; and Cairo, Egypt.

William Fraser was named executive vice president of research and development and engineering and Richard Sol became vice president of licensing marketing and sales. Reporting to Sol are directors of licensing sales and marketing Felix Jacobson and Mike Gallagher.

Sol predicted global metallocene-catalyzed PE demand will exceed 4.4 billion pounds a year by 2000. Total PE consumption currently is about 100 billion pounds annually, he said at an April 16 press conference in New York.

Krupp gets closer to U.S. blow molders

EDISON, N.J. — Edison-based Krupp Plastics & Rubber Machinery Inc. announced plans to build a 38,000-square-foot assembly plant in Somerville, N.J., to manufacture Krupp Kautex extrusion blow molding machines.

The Somerville factory will be the first direct U.S. assembly for blow molding machine maker Krupp Kunststofftechnik GmbH of Essen, Germany. In an agreement finalized last year, Engel Machinery Inc. of Guelph, Ontario, is building PET preform injection molding machines for Krupp.

Krupp plans to be in the new plant in October, Thomas Jordan, national sales manager, said in a news release. The plant, which can be expanded to 85,000 square feet, is located on 81/2 acres. The facility will be equipped with 40-and 15-ton cranes.

Krupp announced the U.S. assembly plant April 3. In January, Jordan relocated from Germany to Krupp Plastics & Rubber Machinery's New Jersey headquarters as national sales manager for the firm's Corpoplast unit.

Jordan and other Krupp officials were unavailable for comment.

Krupp Kautex extrusion blow molding machines are used to make products such as drums, bottles for household products and automotive fuel tanks.

In other news, Krupp announced that its first Engel-built PET preform injection press will be delivered to a customer in the second quarter of this year. Krupp did not identify the customer. Krupp Corpoplast sells the preform machines as part of its complete systems for bottle blow molding.

Krupp Kunststofftechnik made news in late 1996 when it purchased fellow German blow molding machinery maker, Battenfeld Fischer Blasformtechnik GmbH of Troisdorf.

Nova plans PE capacity for year 2000

CALGARY, ALBERTA — Nova Chemicals Ltd. plans to install 770 million pounds per year of new polyethylene capacity based on its advanced Sclairtech technology. The Calgary-based firm estimated April 16 that the project will cost about C$280 million (US$201.6 million).

Nova said the PE project will start up at Joffre, Alberta, in 2000, when it and Union Carbide Corp. complete a new ethylene production plant there. About a year ago, Nova estimated it might add 650 million pounds of PE capacity at Joffre.

The resin producer also said it and other PE producers in Alberta will have a local source of PE comonomers, such as butene, hexene and octene. Amoco Canada Petroleum Co. Ltd. of Calgary plans to build a linear alpha olefins plant at Nova's Joffre site by 2000.

Dan Boivin, Nova's president and chief executive officer, said his firm will cut LAO transportation costs because it now sources the comonomers from the U.S. Gulf Coast. Amoco initially will be able to produce 550 million pounds per year of LAOs by using ethylene feedstock provided by Nova. Amoco's Joffre facility will be expandable to 825 million pounds per year.